This week’s offering comes from beach side Tel Aviv where I’m doing my best to avoid an infestation of jellyfish. It was here three years ago I had the proudest sporting experience of my life at the Maccabiah Games and it is here I plan to be again in July 2009 when Nigel Rothband will be leading his barmy cricket army for another medal challenge.
As some of you may know I’ve been kicking my heels and have slowly climbed back on the road to recovery since having an ankle operation in February. Recuperation has gone well though it’s been frustrating having to miss virtually all the first half of the cricket season.
Which reminds me, I have decided to make one final move within the Jewish cricket arena and agreed to accept an offer from London Maccabi Vale to leave Belmont and Edgware for an undisclosed fee. It was a tough decision as I only played for BECC for a season in my second spell with the club (I used to play for Edgware Wanderers pre-merger) and I have some very good friends there.
But the lure of batting alongside the likes of Adam Brand, Paul Durban, Alex Haffner, Jerome Colmans plus the likes of Richard Black, Trevor Wolff and Ryan Kangisser was just too tempting.
The strange thing is that some of my best displays in Jewish cricket have come against Vale but as the saying goes, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.
Flying high at the top of the Middlesex Sunday League Division One, the 1st XI claimed a comfortable 40-run win over Old Parkonians on Sunday with Alex Haffner (65) and Richard Black (54 not out) in the runs. Leading wicket-taker Neil Lederman (3-29) bowled steadily alongside Kangisser and Andy Daniels.
Having represented the club a couple of times in the 1990s, I hope to make my debut second time around a week on Sunday. This weekend, Jon Galloway’s men, who lie four points clear at the top, will look to preserve their unbeaten league record against Grace’s. BECC, meanwhile, entertain Sri Lankan Cavaliers.
Spain’s Euro 2008 victory was well received in Tel Aviv’s Old Port. Having tipped Luis Aragones’ troops to conquer Europe before the competition I was delighted to see Liverpool favourite Fernando Torres fire home the winner. Going into the final I expected the Germans to win but was happy to catch some glimpses of the final whilst trying to get my son off to sleep whilst catching some air at a wedding. The standard of football on show was better than I’d expected and it’s always good to see the Germans lose.
Elsewhere in the JC MSFL, the transfer window has finally opened, and we can expect a busy month in all divisions.
So far, a lot of the transfer gossip has been coming from Essex, with Glenthorne United B, who have snapped up Redbridge Jewish Care’s Ashley Stanton . Fellow new Essex side East London Knights will be testing out their new side when they take on Mitch Young’s FC Team in a pre-season friendly on August 17.